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Govt to fund half of National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan (NFCP)

The Malaysia Government officially announced the National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan (NFCP), its ambitious, multi-billion project, aims to provide nationwide digital connectivity, high-quality and affordable Internet for all Malaysians in urban and rural areas.

Malaysia National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan NFCP Launch

The Government said that the implementation cost of NFCP is estimated to be RM21.6 billion for a period of 5 years (beginning in 2019) whereby between RM10 billion to RM11 billion will be provisioned from the Universal Service Provision (USP) Fund, and the rest will be funded commercially by the service providers including Maxis, Celcom Axiata, Digi, U Mobile, Telekom Malaysia, TIME dotCom and others.

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Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) said that it will prioritise cost-saving measures when implementing the NFCP, such as optimising existing resources and reducing duplication of infrastructure.

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It also aims to create 20,000 job opportunities that involves the construction, operation and maintenance of digital infrastructure during the 5 years period.

The NFCP’s main targets are:

  • Entry-level fixed broadband package at 1% of gross national income (GNI) by 2020
  • Gigabits availability in selected industrial areas by 2020 and to all State Capitals by 2023
  • 100% availability for premises in State Capitals and selected high impact areas with a minimum speed of 500Mbps by 2021
  • 20% availability for premises in sub-urban and rural areas with up to 500Mbps by 2022
  • Fibre network passes 70% of schools, hospitals, libraries, police stations and post offices by 2022
  • Average speed of 30Mbps in 98% of populated areas by 2023
  • Improve mobile coverage along Pan Borneo highway upon completion

NFCP will focus at:

  • State capitals and major cities;
  • Rural areas and underserved groups to bridge the digital gap;
  • High-impact areas, eg. industrial areas;
  • Mobile coverage area without fiber network connection to telecommunication tower (to support 3G, 4G and 5G services);
  • Schools, hospitals, libraries, police stations and post offices;
  • FELDA community and indigenous community;
  • Sectors like small and medium enterprises, education, health and agriculture as well as major transport facilities.

Full media announcement from MCMC below:

The National Fiberisation and Connectivity Plan (NFCP) is the Government’s strategic effort to spur the nation’s economic competitiveness, as well as to prepare the country to embrace Industrial Revolution 4.0 through greater connectivity.

The NFCP facilitates digital connectivity and enables the Rakyat to enjoy holistic changes through initiatives such as fibre broadband accessibility and construction of communication towers. It is a catalyst to bridge the digital divide between the rural and urban areas, as well as providing equal opportunities for all.

Access to high-speed internet services implemented under the NFCP will not only drive growth in sectors such as tourism, manufacturing and education, it will also enhance domestic economic activities while elevating the standard of living of the Rakyat in line with the Government’s shared prosperity vision.

Deputy Prime Minister YAB Dato’ Seri Dr. Wan Azizah Dr. Wan Ismail launched the five-year plan here, today.

The NFCP implementation focuses on initiatives based on policies and projects. This include formulating policies such as removing barriers that hinder fast and cost effective infrastructure deployment at state level, ensuring optimised use of spectrum for better quality and wider coverage of mobile broadband, improving the competitive landscape of the industry, promoting infrastructure sharing, as well as other related policies.

For project-based initiatives, the approach taken involves implementation of various infrastructure projects, which would involve deployment of fibre optic networks, mobile communications transmitters, submarine cables and satellite services at identified areas.

In total, the implementation cost of NFCP is estimated to be RM21.6 billion for a period of 5 years (beginning in 2019) whereby between RM10 billion to RM11 billion will be provisioned from the Universal Service Provision (USP) Fund, and the rest will be funded commercially.

Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) Chairman Al-Ishsal Ishak said that the implementation of NFCP is right on time and is in line with the nation’s aim to grow the digital economy.

“NFCP will chart a new era in Malaysia with a broadband coverage that is robust, pervasive, high quality and affordable. It will benefit the local communities, encouraging them to be involved in the digital economy, creating 20,000 job opportunities that involves the construction, operation and maintenance of digital infrastructure and at the same time, stimulate the nation’s economic growth,” said Al-Ishsal.
The digital economy is expected to contribute up to 20% to Malaysia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 2020, up from 18.3% in 2017.

About Kugan

Kugan is the founder of MalaysianWireless. He has been observing the mobile industry since 2003. Connect with him on Twitter: @scamboy